Saturday, October 25, 2014

After


After a week of rain the sun is bright this morning, the air cool but not cold. My cousin is staying with us till her sisters arrive today. Her husband died yesterday morning at 5 a.m. After she called us, we drove to get her from the hospital. She was packed and sitting alone downstairs. She could not wait to get out of there once Gary had died. She said she felt no connection whatsoever to his body. That shocked her. The man she knew and loved was gone.

She was angry at first. Just pissed the fuck off that he had actually died, and now she had to go on without him. That lasted a couple of hours. Then she was numb, her eyes with that thousand yard stare. And then she looked dazed. I asked her if she was still feeling numb and she said no, she was feeling everything. I put on a mindless movie (Chef) and settled her on the couch with pillows and a blanket. I hoped she would drift off. She didn't, even though she hadn't slept at all the night before. All day she sat there, breaking only to go downstairs for a smoke, a habit she'd successfully quit for years but picked back up in the last month. "At least he didn't die when I was outside smoking a cigarette," she said. "That would have haunted me."

And now the arrangements. I called the funeral home and the man I talked to was the same one we dealt with for Aunt Winnie. He remembered me and greeted me like an old friend. So now I'm on a first name basis with the funeral home director. Hmmm.

I thought I would write more but it seems I've run out of stream. My cousin from Boston just got here. My husband went to get her from the airport. The third sister, the one who lives in San Francisco, arrives at 8 p.m. tonight. I love my husband. He had been so stalwart in all this, so steady and kind. Yesterday, he made curried pumpkin soup. Gotta love a man who makes soup in time of need. And does laundry.

In other news my mother contracted chikungunya. My brother, who she lives with in Kingston, didn't even tell me. She is over the worst of it now, but no.

10 comments:

  1. I'm sorry your mom was so sick and you didn't know. That is so hard. And your cousin…I am sorry for your loss. She is blessed to be taken care of by you.

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  2. Oh no! So much emotion, so few words.

    I'm so sorry for the loss of Gary. My heart goes out to your cousin and to all y'all.

    Your husband is so wonderful - could he please lead a training camp on "How to be a Man"?

    Hearing that about your mother made my joints all start hurting again. I'm sorry for her pain. I hope it passes much more quickly through her than it did me.

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  3. It sounds like a hard time for you. I am sorry to hear about your mom. I imagine your brother was trying to protect you from more to deal with. Remember to take care of yourself at this time. I am sorry for your family's loss. Sweet Jo

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  4. This is so so sad for your cousin, but hopefully her faith that her husband is doing better elsewhere will sustain her while she mourns their life together. That is so hard.
    And that chikungunya is the worst. I hope your mother gets better quickly.

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  5. Reading along -thinking of you and your family. You tell it so vividly; I feel like I am there with you.

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  6. I'm sending all my love. I'm so sorry for the loss of Gary. And for your mother's illness. I hope you are taking care of yourself too.

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  7. Oh, I'm so sorry. I haven't been commenting much lately, but I'm always here, and my heart just breaks for your family over the loss of Gary.

    I'm glad your mother is over the worst of her illness, which sounds just awful. I'm sorry for her, and for you, and for your brother.

    Sending you all love. I feel so close to you and your family, and I know the bloggy universe provides just a peek at a bit of the whole of your life, but you share so much and so beautifully.

    Take care of yourself and your sweet husband, my friend.

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  8. I'm sorry for your family's loss. It sounds like, at the end, it was almost as hard to see him live as to see him die. What an agonizing situation. Sending you hugs from across the ocean.

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  9. Oh, and chikungunya! Yikes! I hope your mother is feeling better!

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  10. What a lot going on in your universe. I am sorry for Gary's loss. He sounds like such a wonderful man. And I'm sad to hear your mother has been going through chikungunya. I looked it up. How awful for her, but I'm glad she is past the worst of it. Remember, please, to take care of yourself. Lots of stress. So glad you have that man/partner/good spirit/friend in your life.

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